Archive for the 'Tags' Category

Openomy launches

Monday, November 14th, 2005

I just received an email telling me that has launched. Openonomy gives its users the ability to store files of up to 1 gig total on its servers. (There’s no copyright policy on the site that I found so I assume it can be used to store all kinds of video and audio files.) You can add tags to them to describe each file.

But Openonomy isn’t just a file system with tags. If it was, it would just serve as your own private online file catalog. Openonomy also allows its Ruby-savvy users to write applications to manipulate and present the tag data from your file system as well as the file systems of other users. It’s kind of like in that sense, but only with the ability to manipulate file tag data.

Microformats aren’t relevant

Saturday, August 27th, 2005

Microformats are sets of XHTML standards to present various bits of metadata on websites. They’re usually used for presenting trivial sets of metadata (hence the ‘micro’ monicker). Microformats include the XFN (XHTML Friends Network) and the rel=tag attribute for links.

The site says that microformats are “Designed for humans first and machines second, microformats are a set of simple, open data formats built upon existing and widely adopted standards.” While I applaud the effort to make a standard to help developers, I’m not sure microformats is terribly relevant. I’d have to argue that humans don’t see the difference between one way of marking up and another, even if they are standardised. So it doesn’t make a difference to the population. You don’t have to look further than the XFN format for evidence of irrelevancy. It was proposed two years ago by Matt Mullenwegg and has yet to become anything more than an interesting idea. Microformats are certainly not “widely adopted”. But having said that, there is one popular microformat — Technorati’s rel=tag attribute. Unfortunately, the only one who seems to be using it is … yup, Technorati. - an open-ended bulletin board with tags

Saturday, August 20th, 2005

Written using Ruby on Rails, could quite possibly be a work of genius. I haven’t decided yet. It’s still too new and I haven’t seen the full potential of it yet. In the “About” section, the creator insists that “It’s great for online classifieds, recipes, reviews, rants, scrapbooks, and useful information of all kinds.” Yes, it can be used for all those things, but I’m not sure whether this is the perfect format for any of them. It is a bulletin board, but more in the sense of the corkboard kind with all its chaos, not like the online kind which is often known as a forum. All the posts appear on the front page. And without categories, it may be hard to browse for things — you have to use the search function instead.

Online social tagging is not about sharing

Friday, August 19th, 2005

A landmark study from the HP research department finds that social bookmarking is less about sharing than we thought. A large portion of the tags on used by the study group to describe documents on the web were self-referencing (ie mycomments) or for self-organising purposes (ie toread). As an example, in the last 15 days, over 30,000 links had no tags in them, suggesting that they were less for sharing than for self-tracking. But this was not a study of motives, but rather of finding out how links were used and how they were being described. Probably the next step is to distribute a qualitative survey via to its users, asking for information to provide insights into motives of tagging.

New wishlist sites

Saturday, August 6th, 2005

Two new wishlist sites have come about recently. and Unlike’s wishlist, these are not site specific and you can list items you find on any shopping website. Both of them work very similarly. You can share your wishlist publicly or privately both on the website and in RSS feeds. Both of them supply bookmarklets for easy updating of your list. supports user-added tags, but neither service has a recommendations engine like does. But I’ll bet they’re both looking into it.

Via the RSS Wiki

Wordpress taxonomy

Thursday, July 21st, 2005

The ad hoc nature of tags appeals to me more than categories as a taxonomy system. I’d rather not have my posts conform to a pre-set list of pigeon-holes, but rather flow with whatever’s in fashion. However the tagging plugins written for Wordpress are not recognised by Technorati and the use of Technorati tags is a big traffic driver for me.

Fortunately, Technorati does recognise the internal categorisation system of Wordpress as an alternative to Technorati tags. So I’ve decided on a hybrid system. After much testing of alternative plugins, I’ve installed Jerome’s Keywords plugin to satisfy my taxonomy needs. And I set up broad categories in Wordpress using popular search keywords like ‘Google’ and ‘RSS’. The Wordpress categories will not be visible, but Technorati will still pick them up in my RSS feed. And since it is not my primary taxonomy system, it won’t be a priority to always keep it up to date. When a search keyword falls out of fashion, I can simply delete the whole category without much of a loss.

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